Special Needs Resource Directory

  • Wish-Granting Organizations

    Wish-granting organizations provide wishes to children who have a life-threatening diagnosis. Typically, the wish recipient is diagnosed on or before their 18th birthday, and wishes are not granted to children under the age of 3 unless they are not expected to reach their 3rd birthday.

    Wishes are generally divided into three main categories:

    1. Travel
    2. Adventure
    3. Meeting a famous person

    Disney trips, shopping sprees and meeting a favorite celebrity are among the most popular wishes. Each wish-granting organization should be consulted directly for eligibility criteria, application process and organization rules. The Complex Care Center at Cincinnati Children's provides information on some of these organizations.

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    Organizations

    • A Special Wish Foundation grants the wishes of children under the age of 21. You can find a chapter in your area. 
    • Children's Wish Foundation International finances the wishes of children in 53 countries.
    • Dream Factory grants wishes for children who are diagnosed with critical or chronic illnesses, not only those with life threatening conditions.
    • Dream Foundation is the first national wish-granting organization for adults 18 years of age or older. They have granted thousands of dreams to adults who are emotionally, financially and physically devastated by terminal illness. They help chronically ill adults as well as those with shortened life expectancies.
    • Elle Foundation grants final wishes for children with a recurrence of cancer.

      Applications will only be accepted for children diagnosed with a recurrence of cancer between the ages of 5 and 18. Children must also reside in New York, New Jersey, or Pennsylvania. (If exceptional medical circumstances exist for children outside this area you can fill out the application form and contact the foundation). The child applying for the wish must have finished all forms of treatment and been in remission for at least 24 months.

    • Family Village provides a comprehensive list of wish-granting organizations.    
    • Hunt of a Lifetime grants a fishing or hunting "dream trip" for youth with a life-threatening illness. 
    • Make-A-Wish Foundation
    • Starlight Children's Foundation  
    • Sunshine Foundation
    • Team IMPACT is a non-profit organization that pairs children facing life-threatening illnesses with college athletic teams. General eligibility requirements for participating children include diagnosis of a life-threatening disease and have recently (the last 2-3 years) been undergoing a range of medical treatments that:
      • Involve lots of time and extended stays in the hospital.
      • Have had an adverse impact on the child's ability to participate in certain athletic, social and academic activities.
      • Have had an adverse impact on the child's development (physically, academically, socially or psychologically).
      • The child is at least 5 years old and either a resident of the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic or Midwest or being treated at a medical facility in that region. 

    Ohio

    • A Kid Again is an Ohio organization serving wish-eligible children and their families. Adventures' mission is to create fun-filled free opportunities for the whole family in the local Cincinnati, Dayton and Columbus areas. Adventures events help children and families experience life in a more meaningful way and create lasting memories. A child with a life-threatening illness is eligible for both a wish and Adventures programming.
    • Cincinnati Dreams Come True serves children under the age of 18 who live within a 100 mile radius of Cincinnati, or who are regular patients of Cincinnati Children's.
    • Paige’s Princess Foundation, Inc. is a non-profit organization providing small grants to pediatric patients with lifelong disabilities. They are not condition-specific and consider applications from any disorder or diagnosis that results in the disability of the child. Grants will be made to finance adaptive equipment or therapeutic services to enhance the quality of life, mobility and independent function of the child. Applicants must be under age 21 and live within 100 miles of the greater Cincinnati area or be established patients at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.

    Indiana

    • Indiana Children's Wish Fund grants the wishes of Indiana children between the ages of 3-18 who have been diagnosed with a life-threatening illness.

 
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